In a glorious valley below majestic mountains, the lovely country town of Barberton is an old place in many respects. In the modern era, the settlement was home to the first stock exchange in the region during the gold rush of the late 1880s. In the more ancient sense, the mountains that surround the town are amongst the oldest rock formations in the world.

Top attractions

When evening comes the Barberton daisy closes its petals and lowers its head. Photo courtesy of Sean Garrett

Put on a pair of gumboots and a hard hat for a gold mine tour, or try your luck panning for gold at Digger's Retreat. Photo courtesy of Matt Mawson

  • Genesis Route - The Barberton/Makhonjwa Mountainlands World Heritage Site along the Bulembu Road near Barberton is geologically unique. The rocks are known as the Genesis of Life and are 3.5 billion years old
  • Some of the oldest gold in the world lies in "them thar hills", so it is only right that the town should be the home to one of South Africa's earliest stock exchanges. The remains of the De Kaap Stock Exchange have been declared a national monument.
  • The Nelshoogte Pass is a beautiful road between Barberton and Badplaas en route out of our region towards Swaziland and KwaZulu-Natal
  • The rare samango monkey may very occasionally be seen in the dense forests to the south-east of the town
  • Numerous spectacular overnight- and day-trails loop along the high mountaintops
  • The Barberton town museum is one of the finest such establishments in the country. Alongside it stands a jewellery shop where you can see old gold being fashioned into new accoutrements
  • There is a statue of Jock of the Bushveld, the dog that inspired Sir Percy Fitzpatrick's novel of the same name, outside the town hall
  • Gold mine tours can be arranged. Panning for gold continues throughout the year at Digger’s Retreat near Louw’s Creek
  • The Barberton daisy is a small red flower which dots the hills around the town. It is endemic to the region
  • The 21km Havelock Mine cableway is the longest aerial cableway outside of Europe
  • If you really want a thrill, try paragliding over some of the oldest scenery on earth

Did you know?

A depiction of Barberton featured as the home town of Peekay, the hero of Bryce Courtney’s novel The Power of One.

For more information

Barberton Tourist Information: +27 (0)13 712 2880

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